Butler Ignored Phantom Pressures

Category: Phantom of the Opera News | Posted by: admin
Article Date: December 7, 2004 | Publication: SciFiWire | Author: editors
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Gerard Butler, who stars in Joel Schumacher's upcoming big-screen adaptation of Andrew Lloyd Webber's stage musical The Phantom of the Opera, told SCI FI that he chose to ignore the inevitable comparisons to previous versions of the show and earlier interpretations of the central character. "You just focus on your performance and block out everything else," Butler said in an interview. "It's not that you don't feel the pressure at times; you do, but you have to use it to prove people wrong."

Butler steps into a role played onstage by dozens of leading men, including, most famously, Michael Crawford, who at one point was considered for the role in the long-in-development movie. Butler also uses his own voice in the all-singing role, a first for him in a movie.

Butler, whose credits include Timeline and Dracula 2000, added, "You adapt to everything else, working with Joel, mixing with the other actors. I was never doing Phantom for anyone else other than Joel, Andrew Lloyd Webber and the cast. If you think about anything else it just gets you in knots. Having played iconic figures before, people like Attila or Dracula or Beowulf, who I've just played, or the Phantom, I think you can only do what is physically possible." The Phantom of the Opera opens in limited release on Dec. 22 before haunting additional theaters in early 2005.